Sentencing environmental offences – new guidance published

Friday, May 2, 2014

In March 2013, following requests by the Environment Agency and other interested parties, the Sentencing Council issued a consultation document containing draft guidance for use when sentencing environmental offenders. The final version of the guidance, entitled Environmental Offences Definitive Guideline, has now been published. It is intended to ensure that the penalties imposed on individuals and organisations convicted of certain offences are consistent and fully reflect the seriousness of the breach.

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UK Environmental sentencing: A large fine can be appropriate for a medium culpability, low harm offence committed by a large entity.

Friday, May 2, 2014

R v Sellafield Limited (January 2014)

Sellafield Limited (“SL”) pleaded guilty in 2013 to seven offences committed on or before April 2010 which concerned the management, transport and disposal of certain radioactive and exempt waste arisings from its site in West Cumbria.

Approximately 5,000 waste bags were sent to a conventional landfill following incorrect readings from instruments intended to ensure that only waste classified as “exempt” (non-radioactive) left the site for that disposal route.

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